Cookin’ it up with Elizabeth- Sweet Potatoes and Yams!

Scalloped Yams with Chestnuts and Lime

10 Servings

2 ¾ to 3 lbs long slender yams (about 5 or 6)

2/3 c light brown sugar

6 T (3/4 stick) unsalted butter

1/3 c fresh lime juice

1/4 t salt

3 T dark rum

1/2 c chestnuts in heavy syrup (about 8), drained and halved (or quartered, depending on size)

2 T freshly grated lime peel

Combine yams in large saucepan with just enough water to cover. Partially cover pan, place over medium-high heat and cook until yams are barely tender when pierced with knife, about 20-25 minutes. Drain well; let cool. Trim ends at point where yams are 1½ inches in diameter. Peel yams. Cut crosswise into ½-inch slices.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Generously butter shallow 9×13-inch baking or gratin dish. Arrange yams in dish in rows, overlapping slightly. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Bring to room temperature before using.)

Combine sugar, butter, lime juice and salt in medium saucepan over low heat and stir until butter is melted. Increase heat to medium and bring to simmer. Let simmer 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in rum. Arrange chestnuts evenly over yams. Pour butter mixture over top. Bake 15 minutes, basting twice. Sprinkle lime peel over top and continue baking until yams are tender, about 10 minutes.

Preheat broiler. Broil until chestnuts are toasted and tops of yams are browned, 1 to 2  minutes. Serve hot.

Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Bananas with Pecan Streusel

12 Servings

10 medium-size tan-skinned sweet potatoes (approx 6 lbs), scrubbed

4 bananas, unpeeled

1/2 c butter, room temperature

1/3 c honey

1 1/2 c pecan pieces

3/4 c packed brown sugar

1/2 c all purpose flour

1/2 c butter, cut into small pieces

Preheat oven to 400°F. Pierce sweet potatoes with fork. Place on rimmed baking sheet or in roasting pan and bake until almost soft, about 40 minutes. Add bananas to roasting pan next to sweet potatoes and bake until banana skins brown, about 10 minutes. Let sweet potatoes and bananas stand at room temperature until cool enough to handle, about 15 minutes (maintain oven temperature). Cut sweet potatoes in half. Scoop flesh from sweet potatoes into large bowl. Peel bananas; add to bowl. Add ½ c butter and honey; beat with wooden spoon until blended and fluffy. Season to taste with salt. Transfer to 8-10 cup ovenproof baking dish.

Mix nuts, sugar and flour in bowl. Add ½ cup butter; mix with fingertips until coarse crumbs form. (Potatoes and streusel can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately; chill. Before continuing, preheat oven to 400°F.) Sprinkle streusel over potatoes. Bake until top is golden brown and potatoes are hot, about 25 minutes.

Special Notes:

This recipe travels well and is loved by kids and adults (just don’t mention the bananas!)

Both of these recipes are simple and delicious!

The Yams with Chestnuts is the lighter version and the lime and rum give this dish pizzazz.

The Mashed Sweet Potatoes, Bananas and Pecan Streusel is fantastic. I was thoroughly prepared not to like the banana in combination with the sweet potatoes, but I was WRONG! This is a definite crowd pleaser!

What I learned….

1. There is a difference between strudel and streusel-


A strudel is a type of pastry that originated in Central Europe and is most often associated with Austrian and German cuisine. The best known kinds are Apfelstrudel (with apple) and Topfenstrudel (with Topfen, also called Quark) (via Google searching for “define:streusel“)

STREUSEL: A crunchy topping used to cover pies, fruit crisps and coffeecakes. It has a high proportion of butter and sugar to flour and can contain any kind of chopped nut, oats and spices.

2. There is a difference between yams and sweet potatoes, but it’s complicated…in general, sweet potatoes ends taper off to a point and yams have rough, scaly skin. Did you know that wild yams can grow to be up to 130 pounds? I did not know that. For more about the differences between sweet potatoes and yams…

Hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving! We will be traveling down to my brother’s house in Connecticut. My sister-in-law Pam is a fantastic cook, so we will be having a feast. We will miss Charlie, but only a month until we see him in Spain!!!!!

Safe Travels and Bon Appetit,


1 Comment

Filed under Elizabeth's Recipes, Fall Recipes, Sweet potatoe/Yam recipes, Thanksgiving recipes

One response to “Cookin’ it up with Elizabeth- Sweet Potatoes and Yams!

  1. Had a FANTASTIC Thanksgiving feast- don’t know how I’m going to keep up this eating!. My sister-in-law, Sarah shared this article with me- seems that sweet potatoes are really “in”. So here we are, once again, on the cutting edge! Good and good for you.

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